Samsung Outs Verizon Developer Edition Galaxy S III
Jul 10, 2012, 7:30 PM by Eric M. Zeman
Samsung today announced the pending availability of a special, developer edition of the Verizon Samsung Galaxy S III. The developer edition, which must be purchased directly from Samsung's developer organization for the full retail price of $599, will have an unlocked bootloader. The bootloader of the retail Verizon GS3 is locked. Samsung explains that this device is not meant for average consumers, but more for those looking to test and use third-party ROM software on their device. Though the bootloader of the retail GS3 can be forcibly unlocked, doing so voids the warranty, puts the security of the device in jeopardy, and could lead to a bricked phone. Samsung didn't say when the developer edition GS3 would become available. The AT&T, Sprint, and T-Mobile variants of the GS3 are sold to consumers with an unlocked bootloader to begin with.
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Why does Samsung need to provide a "different" phone for their customers.
What difference does it make?
AFAIK, flashing any ROM voids the manufacturer's warranty regardless of the bootloader being locked or not.
Anyone who would benefit from this developer device can probably hack their way around the GSIII's locked bootloader anyway.